Sunday, July 7, 2013
In Which I Do Not Buy Resort Wear
I've long been curious about Fernandina Beach. When I worked for The New York Times company, I dealt with the newspaper in Fernandina occasionally -- it's one of the dozens of small-town newspapers that the Times used to own. I developed a mental image of the town as a quaint, old-fashioned Florida community.
Which it is, I can now report, having visited yesterday with my mom and brother. We drove up along the coast and first went to Fort Clinch, a pre-Civil War fort at the mouth of the St. Marys River. We walked around the brick ramparts in the insufferable heat and avoided the costumed re-enactors who were explaining things to visitors. (I'm just not into re-enacting. Especially when it's 90 degrees. How they wear those uniforms in that heat, I'll never know.)
Then we drove to an overlook that gave us a view of the Amelia Island lighthouse across the grassy channel. That was probably my favorite view of the day. Everybody loves a lighthouse, right?
Afterwards we took a quick walk through downtown Fernandina Beach, peeking in the windows of the souvenir and "resort wear" shops. Do I need any resort wear? I guess if I have to ask, the answer is no.
Back toward Jacksonville, we stopped for lunch at the Sand Dollar, overlooking the water across the river from the naval station. I had a redfish sandwich (is that like red snapper?) and watched empty container ships the size of Manhattan apartment houses heading out to sea. We wondered what they'd just delivered. Cars? Cheap plastic kitchen objects? Beauty products?
This morning mom and I are heading back to Tampa.
(Photos: Top, Amelia Island Lighthouse. Middle, Fort Clinch. Bottom, Beauty Palace, Jacksonville.)